April is Child Abuse Prevention Month -"PAINT the Town Blue"
The Family Refuge Center, Family Resource Network and Child and Youth Advocacy Center, Department of Health and Human Services, Pocahontas County Sheriff's Department and CASA-Court Appointed Special Advocates will host a "Paint the Town Blue" celebration and public awareness event concerning child abuse and neglect Friday, April 2, at 1 p.m. at the gazebo in downtown Marlinton.
Our community has done many great things in dealing with this tragedy and we would like to continue to build a safe, nurturing and a happy environment in which our children can grow and flourish. CYAC will have two presentations, a story from Joanna Bennett, her story of child abuse survival and the Champions for Children Awards. Huntersville First Baptist youth group will provide hotdogs for everyone in attendance. Local businesses can show their support by shining blue lights the entire month. We ask everyone to wear a blue ribbon to support Child Abuse Prevention Month, as well as celebrate the efforts of these agencies.
ﾷ History of Child Abuse Prevention Month
In the early 1980s, Congress made a further commitment to identifying and implementing solutions to child abuse. Recognizing the alarming rate at which children continued to be abused and neglected and the need for innovative programs to prevent child abuse and assist parents and families affected by maltreatment, Congress resolved that the week of June 6-12, 1982, should be designated as the first National Child Abuse Prevention Week. They asked the President to issue a proclamation calling on Government agencies and the public to observe the week with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.
The following year, April was proclaimed the first National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Since then, child abuse and neglect awareness activities have been promoted across the country during April of each year.
In 1989, the Blue Ribbon Campaign to Prevent Child Abuse began as a Virginia grandmother's tribute to her grandson who died as a result of abuse. She tied a blue ribbon to the antenna of her car as a way to remember him and to alert her community to the tragedy of child abuse. The Blue Ribbon Campaign has since expanded across the country, and many wear blue ribbons each April in memory of those who have died as a result of child abuse. In other communities, special fundraisers are held to support prevention activities and treatment facilities for victims, and candlelight vigils are held as a remembrance. Most recently, the focus has shifted to a more positive message of celebrating "blue ribbon" individuals, organizations and communities that have done much to prevent child abuse and neglect.
We ask each of you to please come out and help us "Paint the Town Blue" and support the efforts in your community to celebrate in the accomplishments, hard work and dedication to having ﾠa safe, happy and nurturing environment for all of our children.